Up until this point, I never thought much about it. I looked at experience and maybe education. Other CEOs tell me they only hire PhDs. Candidates that are Poor, Hungry and Determined. Truth be told, I mostly hired people that I liked. I think most companies work this way.
I realize now there’s much more to it.
Now, I think about cultural fit. Is the candidate a team player? I spend time thinking about the personality traits a particular job requires and the behavior someone should have to do well in a particular role. I now value potential over education. I want people who are fun and filled with life. I want ambition and drive. I want folks who believe they are put on this earth to make a difference. I want people who don’t give up. Ever.
I’ve worked with a lot of bad CEOs and managers in the past. They throw around words like loyalty and family without understanding what those words mean. Perhaps they’re insecure, or they misunderstand their role as leader. They use words to guilt their teams into submission, rather than to inspire them to greatness.
I prefer to use a phrase like Our Vision and to use this as a standard by which to measure a person’s actions. A shared goal, governed by a shared belief system, gives rise to some very cool stuff. Trust. Loyalty. Family.
I’m confident there’s only a few companies on the planet where the employees would use these words to describe how they feel about their company. As the leader, it’s my job to ensure I hire the people who get us there.
After all, a company becomes who it hires.